Rick Warren and the mess that was the Keynote Address at Ebenezer Baptist Church


Updates to come…

But let the record show that Rick Warren did a complete and total and utter disservice to the legacy that was the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King.  He should have let it slide with the inaugural invocation tomorrow morning, but this fool got up in front of a black congregation and quoted his book mostly; he couldn’t pronounce Darwin Hobbs first name, who sang “I’m Available to You” as the sermonic selection; and for 90% of his sermon he took random feel good quotes and stringed them together.

This was a travesty to the name and legacy that was Dr. King.

The best Rick Warren did was compare the story of Moses and the rod turning from a snake back into the stick and used the metaphor’s of what does the stick really represent.  He then turned the question to the congregation–“What’s in your hand?”

The fact that he epically failed on that preaching moment showed how unaware he was to the black preaching tradition.  Honestly, if he had worked the three metaphors he had, the church would have gotten with him.

Sadly, as my friend and I texted back and forth through the rigamarole that was his keynote address, this was really moreover, an epic fail on behalf of the King Center committee.  They failed to understand the supreme significance of this day and this hour.  As I sit here in a DC suburb planning to attend tomorrow’s inauguration, how could one not feel the electricity in the air and pick Rick Warren who has not done much here at home for the people in THIS country.  Often times the problem that the Black Church has with white evangelicals is their ability to go outside of this country and help, but sit and criticize the cities in which their suburban churches surround.  Notice, Warren spoke about his concern for AIDS in Africa–yes, it is a problem, I’m glad someone is doing something about it, but wouldn’t we as a country be more effective if we tackled the problems in our own backyard.

See, global problems sometimes fall deaf on the ears of African Americans because of the own problems we face in our day to day lives.

Btw, let the record show that Ebenezer pastor Rev. Raphael Warnock and Ebenezer staff was no where to be seen at the church and in a weird way, the absence of the usual lectern in the pulpit missing and the usual chairs that the pulpit staff sits in on Sunday morning made a symbolic difference.

Thank God for people with sense when it’s necesary.

Keep it uppity and keep it truthfully radical, JLL 


3 thoughts on “Rick Warren and the mess that was the Keynote Address at Ebenezer Baptist Church

  1. Hey there!

    Thank you for sharing the details on Rick Warren’s attempt at preaching.

    It was wise of the Ebenezer staff not to sit in the pulpit. They were only allowing their church building to be used for the event. They were not the hosts. If they had been in the pulpit, it would have given the impression that they had invited this speaker and that they were hosting.

    I still hope that black preachers will stop trying to put the focus on Rick Warren and start addressing the SCOURGE in the black church….

    For starters…

    – The subjugation of black women

    – Classism/Exclusion among the ministerial ranks

    – Homophobia

    – Bigotry towards transgenders

    – Greed/elevation of materialism

    – Doctrinal compromise

    – Sexploitation in the pulpit

    – The bully pulpit

    – Reinforcement of black patriarchy (no black women heading ANY major black denominations)

    As black clergy, I feel it would behoove us to remove the log in our own eye.

    Peace, blessings and DUNAMIS!

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